Two former directors of West Midlands stock exchange Investbx have closed a deal to take over the finance body.
Investbx’s former chief executive Sue Summers, who now works for Birmingham City Council, and Investbx board member John Handley have bought the exchange, which was put up for sale by regional development agency Advantage West Midlands as part of its winding down process.
The pair have formed a company called Colmore Row Managed Services, and the deal has the backing of Birmingham City Council.
Patrick Palmer, head of access to finance at Advantage West Midlands, said: “The holding company has now sold its 100 per cent holding in Investbx Ltd to a company called Colmore Row Managed Services Ltd.
“That company is owned and controlled by Sue Summers and John Handley who were involved in the management of Investbx previously.
“The consideration is undisclosed because it is commercially confidential.”
Investbx was set up in 2007 with the aim of helping small and medium-sized firms raise up to £2 million equity finance from private investors who can use the online platform to trade shares.
Just three companies have listed since then and the exchange has had a muted welcome from the local investment community.
However Mark Barrow, Birmingham City Council strategic director for development, said the exchange provided a valuable source of financial backing for small companies that could not afford to borrow money from the banks.
He said that state aid rules prevented the council from acquiring Investbx outright.
“We are supporting the local bid to retain the stock exchange.
“We do not want to see it collapse.
“It is a cheaper way for companies to raise capital, cheaper than the Alternative Investment Market, and it is the only exchange of its type outside of London.
“We are trying to make sure a vehicle is there to support people who otherwise could not get or afford finance.”